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(generated from captions) Shaken and stirred Shaken and stirred - Japan

put on tsunami alert after another powerful earthquake. We believe that

there is still a high risk of

houses collapsing and mud

slides or land slides. This Program is Captioned Live.

A gun man opened fire in a

Brazilian - Brazilian school killing at least 10

stop dock workers going on children. And legal action to

strike. And Rory McIlroy leads

the US Masters.

Good morning. It's Friday, 8

April. I'm Michael Rowland. And I'm Beverley O'Connor. The top

story - it's Japan's worst

nightmare. The country was

again on tsunami alert after a

powerful 7.1 earthquake shook

the north-east early this

morning. In a chilling reminder

this aftershock of last month's massive quake,

same area off the

coast. Buildings shook as far

away as Tokyo, as workers fled

the Fukushima nuclear plant.

Authorities at the power plant insist it didn't cause any more

damage. At the Fukushima

nuclear power plant we have

looked into many issues with

the facilities and our personnel. And have verified

that everything is alright. So

on the Fukushima nuclear let me again repeat and update

were two workers nears reactors

one and two and there were

seven workers near the intake. They have not been

injured. And they have all

taken shelter in our seismic resistant building. ABC correspondent Hayden Cooper

joins us now from Tokyo via

webcam. Good morning, it's

still obviously pretty early

there. Do we have any idea of

the extent of the damage from

this latest quake? As far as we

know it wasn't serious damage

but it was a very big

aftershock. 7.1 and up in

parts hit by the magnitude 9

earthquake a month ago, four

weeks ago today in fact, this

aftershock was felt very

buildings up north. It was strongly. It shook a lot of strongly. It shook a lot

centred off the coast from the

city of Sendai. One of the

areas that was devastated by

the tsunami last month. So as

you said it would have been

terribly frightening for a lot

of people up there. Here in

Tokyo, Michael, the buildings

shook for close to a minute and that's a long time for an

aftershock. So it was a big

one. It had a lot of people

very nervous. Even down here in

Tokyo, so you can only imagine what people would feeling up in the earthquake

zone, as they're still trying

to recover. And nerves would

have been on tenterhooks at the Fukushima nuclear plant. Yes,

as far as we know the radiation

levels have not increased as a result of this earthquake. But

that wasn't the only concern

because, for a start, the

workers were evacuated, as you

just heard, and then they've

they are saying that no new

problems have arisen. But there

are a couple of other power plants which were are a couple of other nuclear

affected by this earthquake overnight. What has happened in overnight. What

a couple of cases - one at a

place on Onagawa and at another

Higachi Doti, those two plants

lost some of their power as a

result of this earthquake. That

is the last thing that anyone

wants to hear. But this morning

we're hearing in fact it hasn't has any major and that the cooling operations

at those two nuclear power

plants have resumed. Both of

them in fact I think were shut

down before this earthquake

hit. So I think the authorities

are pretty confident that they

can keep those two situations

under control. And indeed quake, or aftershock, call it under control. And indeed this

what you will, happened just at

authorities at the plant were

trying yet another way of

calming the situation. I

believe anyway were pumping

nitrogen into reactor number doing it. It could take quite a few days. They're a bit worried there could be another hydrogen

explosion in reactor number 1 and to try to get around that

it. That process will probably they're pumping nitrogen into

have to be repeated in the

other two reactors 2 and 3

there. Because that is the

latest concern of the

authorities. It has disrupted

that work, but, as I said, they

were evacuated briefly but have

since been led back in at

Fukushima. There blackouts right across the

north of Japan in several

cities and townsas a result of

this latest earthquake. And

this of course happens on a rather later today it will be one rather dubious anniversary,

month before the initial quake

and devastating tsunami struck.

Four weeks on, what is the latest in terms of the death toll and the still missing in the toll and the number of people

north-east? There's still an

extraordinary number of people

who are missing. Something like

15,000. The official death toll

is at about now four weeks on there are so many thousands of people who are still missing. Some will

never be found. And the situation at Fukushima

preventing the authorities from

really getting in and doing a

proper search for all the

remaining in the earthquake bodies which are still

zone. So it's terribly difficult situation at the

moment. What they've been doing

in the excluez collusion zone around Fukushima, they've been

going, in sending about 200 or 300 police officers in to search and find the bodies

which are left in that area

alone. In that region alone it

who are still could be something like 3,000

right across the zone, I think

it's pretty obvious to everyone

that it's really going to take

years to clean up and, as I

said, 12,000 confirmed dead but

many more are still missing.

Just repeating powerful

earthquake with a magnitude of

7.1 has hit northern Japan,

close to one month since the initial devastating quake very

Beverley O'Connor with the rest hard to comprehend. Now here is

of the day's news. And a gunman

has opened fire at a school in

children and wounding a dozen Brazil, killing at least 10

more. Before turning the gun on himself. Authorities say the shooter was a 24-year-old

former student at the school.

Police say he a-Ryde carried a

backpack and said he was backpack and said he was going

a conference. He was arm ed

with two guns and had a suicide

Ivory Coast has note. Japan's Ambassador in

Ivory Coast has been rescued in

a daring operation by French troops. The Ambassador and

seven of his staff were trapped in the embassy for hours after

troops loyal to Laurent Gbagbo

overran the building and overran the building and used

it as a base to fire weapons.

Fierce fighting has broken out again in Abidjan, where the

besieged President is still refusing to surrender. Patricks

Stevedores is planning to

launch legal action today in an

11th hour bid to try to stop

legal action at the ports. It's

locked in a battle over a pay

dispute. The union is

threatening rolling strike action from company says the action will disrupt dozens of ships.

There's bhn an angry back lash

against Stephen Smith from the

defence community over his

reaction to the sex scandal at the Defence Force Academy. Some

senior officers are using the Minister of jumping the gun and

unfairly maligning the

military. Mr Smith says the

academy poorly managed a young

cadet who claimed she was

secretly filmed having sex with a

executive will meet today to elect a new national secretary.

George Wright is tipped to get

the top onand he has

backing of the dominant right

faction and been endorsed by

Prime Minister Julia

Gillard. The Tasmanian Government has joined the

growing chorus of voices crying

foul at job cuts at the 'Mercury' newspaper. A rally in

Hobart has gained the support

of the economic Minister who is

planning to take his concerns

to News Limited's

in knee. In other Australian

State, the loss f News Limited jobs has

jobs has been met with a muted response. Not in Tasmania. About 150 people

ralliedout side State Parliament over plans to

shifted most of the paper's

subediting to a centralised hub

in Melbourne. They're not

getting rid of the jobs,

they're just moving them

elsewhere. Up to 20 of the newspapers' sub editors could

go. That is on top of about 14 editorial jobs that were axed

last year. It's sub now, it will be reporters next. It's feared the cutbacks

will affect the quality and

accuracy of local content

produced by Tasmania's most politically influential

newspaper. I am blowed if I can see see how a sub editor in Melbourne can treat and handle

a story that coming out of Hobart about the forestry

debate. They will just have no

idea. The rally attracted support from politicians and a

promise of action. I will be

writing today at News Limited to say that we will not accept your decision. I am delighted the community is rallying behind a newspaper. The campaign is

called Save our mercury. called Save our mercury. There is nothing to stave mercury

from, the mercury is a vibant

business. The fate of business. The fate of staff could be known next could be known next week following a News Limited following a News Limited budget meeting in Sydney. Let's head overseas. And fierce fighting

is continuing in the Ivory

Coast where Japan's Ambassador

has been rescued from the city

of Abidjan. The Ambassador and

his staff were trapped in embassy for hours when it was taken over by troops loyal to Laurent Gbagbo. For more, Africa correspondent Ginny

Stein joins us Stein joins us now via webcam. Let's start with this

very dairg rescue of the

Japanese ambassador by the

French. It was an & rescue

operation that only took about

half an hour. But it was a

very, very difficult and dangerous operation. The French

came in in a helicopter, they

managed to pluck the ambassador and six or seven other people

there who were with him to

safety. During that time, though, they were fired upon

and they fired back, destroy ing a number of vehicles

belonging to Laurent Gbagbo, to

his forces They had taken over

this - the Gbagbo forces had

taken over this building and

were really sort of using it as

a base? We we're not really

sure who had taken it over. What we know is it was described ambassador was saying he was

locked in a safe room so he

wasn't able to see who it was

and who they were firing at. He was unsure exactly who it was

who had taken it over. But this

is the situation in Abidjan at

the moment, increasing

lawlessness, in many of the

people who are trying to unseat, to oust Laurent Gbagbo

are either loyal to Alassane Ouattara or simply opposed to

Laurent Gbagbo so they all have

their own agendas and it's

really dangerous street

fighting that is going on there

now. The UN has been trying play a role negotiating some

form of hur ender by Gbagbo.

What role are they playing now? How are

How are they trying to mediate

this very deteriorating situation? What we understand is that there is still communication with Laurent Gbagbo that he does have phone communications, communications, that they're still talking

what we have seen the UN is

raising considerable concern

about what is happening not

just in Abidjan but across the

in New York, Valerie Amos, who

is the emergency is the emergency relief

coordinator for the UN, she

said that people there are witnessing terrible violence. People immensely traumatise, they have witnessed terrible violence and many have

been directly targeted. Women

told me stories of their husbands being executed. Hundreds of children have been

separated from their parents.

And women and girls have

alleged ly been kidnapped. As

we hear there, documenting the

atrocity s but the reality is

that things are getting worse

on the ground. They are. It's

not just in Abidjan but it's also outside and across the country. We're hearing reports

of further atrocities being

committed in the areas close to the

the Liberian border and aid workers say they're not able workers say they're not able to

get out to these places because

around looting and pillaging. They're just not able to get anywhere to see

what is going on. Thanks very what is going on. Thanks very much for your time much for your time this morning. Thank you. Let's look

at the front pages of today's

page newspapers from around the

country now. The 'Age' says Joe

Hockey has been forced into a

humiliating backdown over his proposal to tax family trusts. And The 'Canberra

Times' says the Minister's intervention into the ADF sex

scandal has incensed Canberra's and the and the nation's military

community. The hertion says an

audit has revealed hundreds of Victorians including criminals an road menaces illegally hold multiple drivers licences. The

'Sydney Morning Herald' says

the Government will meet club

and hotel officials today to

negotiate an acceptable

clampdown on poker machines. The 'Australian' says the mining boom is masking the

true state of the economy with weakness sectors such as retail, housing and construction. The

'Financial Review' says the chiefs of Australia's largest

investment managers and superannuation

superannuation funds say a

carbon price will have lit im-Pat on company earnings. An

Army of private debt collectors

is likely to be hired to track down people who down people who owe unpaid fines and taxes. The 'Advertiser' says a 27-year-old

woman weighed just 11 kiloings when she died in her family

home. The 'West Australian'

says a European company has

identified Perth as the preferred home for $4 billion resort and theme

park. The 'Mercury' says a Tasmanian surfer and

entrepreneur has died in Bali after suffering an allergic reaction. The 'Northern Territory News' says Robert Ritchie was last night dumped as

as head of the Darwin Port

Corporation but will serve out

his contract with the Chief Minister's department. What is

coming up on the show this morning? morning? We will be looking

into reports of possibly

swinging cuts to the medical

research. A lot of people in

the community have been research is going to be in the

Government's target sights as

it prepares to meet its aim of

keeping the budget in surplus by 2012,-l-13. We will be

joined later by one of the key

medical research houses, the

Burnett Institute, who is concerned

concerned about the possibility

of losing money. This at a time

when we're told to be more

smart and clever and hang on to these research people so we don't lose their internationally. Lots of money

overseas for our best and

bright est to go away.

critical one. If you would like

to join the conversation on that topic or any others,

perhaps too your Defence g response to the defence

association saying the Minister, Stephen Smith, has

got it completely wrong in his

response to the sex scandal that has embroiled the Defence Force. You can contact us:

Let's take a quick look the weather now.

The top stories - Japan has

been rocked by a powerful 7.1 aftershock, the earthquake

prompted another tsunami alert

that was latest cancelled. struck in the same area as last month's devastate ing quake. Workers from the Fukushima nuclear plant were evacuate ed

but but authorities insist it hasn't caused hasn't caused any further

challenge damage. A gunmen has

killed 10 children in a Brazilian school and about

Brazilian school and about a

dozen others have been injured.

The man then took his own

life. Patricks Stevedores is taking action against the

Maritime Union to stop a series

of rolling strikes due to begin

today. The union is demanding

more pay and better retirement

benefits. The company says the

ships at ports across the

country. A former union official is

tipped to be elected as the

Labor Party's new national secretary today. Melissa Clarke joins us from Canberra. Knew,

George Wright is the George Wright is the man tipped to take over from Karl Bitar

and it looks like he's got

backing from on high. That is

right. He was tapped on the

shoulder by none other than

Julia Gillard herself and asked

to hut his hand up

those from the right, were

hoping that Anthony Chisolm, the

the State secretary in Queensland for the ALP, would

go for the top job but he

decided he wanted to stay in Queensland for family reasons

and ho help Anna Bligh's re-election effort. So re-election effort. So that left a bit of a gap. They've

been looking around for a

candidate and in the end Julia Gillard has had George Wright

who used to be with the ACTU,

he worked closely with Greg

Combet and was f one of the

architects of the Your Right s

at Work campaign to get Labor eelected in 2007.

He worked for a Kevin Rudd for

a while. He is currently a

senior fuf at the NAB bank but he has he has been asked by Julia Gillard to stand for the job

and he has the backing of the

right of the ALP, even he is not faction ally align

and doesn't plan on joining a faction. The ALP national

executive will be meeting today

to select someone. There is a possibility that the left will

put up a canneddate Nick Martin

but the right have the numbers on the executive. We will ef

pect George Wright over from Karl Bitar and become

the new national secretary of

the ALP. And he has quite a job

ahead of him. Labor is facing a

lot hurdles to get lot hurdles to get their agenda

through? And faces a time of really restructure for the ALP

because he will be the new

national secretary that will

take on any reforms to the ALP

that they decide to take up

after that review that was done

by Steve Bracks, Bob Carr and

John Faulk Faulkner that looked

year and looking at some of the

troubles in NSW as well that are feeding through to the

Federal sphere. He comes in knows that there will need to be an be an overhaul in the way

things are done within the ALP. And his main game will be

looking at how to get the ALP

in a majority government

position come the next Federal

election, not knowing precisely

when that might be. Yesterday

we saw the Defence Minister,

Stephen Smith, very strong on

the sex scandal that is embroiling the Defence Department again. But

we're seeing just how tough his job is and every Defence

Minister ahead of him because, once again, the troops have rallied and the Defence Association have come out very,

very strongly very strongly and some former

top brass as well saying he has

no right to be jumping in as

strongly as he is. That is

right. Neil James from the Australian Defence Association

made the point yesterday that

Ministers - you will often hear

members of the government and

the Opposition when it comes to

criminal matters, matter s

before a civil court - you will

hear politicians say I can't comment on that are underfoot and not

wanting to step in when it comes to judicial cases. But he points to Stephen Smith's

statement s yesterday where he said in

said in his opinion he thought the case for this young woman at the centre of these

scandals, her disciplinary mat

thaersz were parallel tracked

and she she pleaded guilty to

some minor mis demeanors and

given some small disciplinary

matters, he said in his opinion

that should be quash and asked

for it to be looked at for ways this can be redone or

wouldn't do that in a regular

civil criminal matter so why is a Minister injecting himself

with internal procedure s in with internal procedure s in a

military matter? And the Defence Association is also

frustrated that Stephen Smith

has failed to give clear and

explicit backing to the led of

the Australian Defence Force

Academy. This is an example of

pushback. There's been strong

words not only by Stephen words not only by Stephen Smith

but also by ang just Houston, who says he backs everything

the Minister said. Now ewe're

starting to see the pushback

from some of the ranks are of

the Defence Force who are not necessarily happy with this is being played out this is being played out and

the way the entire Defence Force is being looked at

because of these incidents that are coming to a head. It is

interesting, sint, how Defence

Association has come out so

strongly in a battle with the

Minister rather than really

strongly saying this behaviour

is unacceptable. It is amazing. Also underscores

what's always been a what's always been a deep divide between the defence

community and the Minister going back through history. Ministers often trying to

oppose their political will on a department known for its

strong views on the way the

military should operate. As we

- Just not tapping into community opinion. Stephen

Smith should remember the Defence Department has guns!

It's a joke. Possibly a bad

one. Not the right time. Let's

head overseas now and Portugal

has joined Greece and Ireland in asking for an emergency bail-out from the European the country will need between 70 and 80 billion euros to finance its finance its spirally debt. Portugal, so debt. Portugal, so often sunny,

laid back, but now it needs to

be bailed out. The Prime Minister here said he didn't want to resort to the begging

bowl but that is exactly what's

happened. I am worried but it

had to be like. That No it's

finish. I don't know, tomorrow. But now, yesterday it's finished. Trying to stave off this day, there have been four

rounds of cuts. At increasingly

the people protested. There

were new taxes on some pension,

public sector wages were cut,

less money for local

councils. But the markets saw a

country with a large deficit.

For months, the Government had

been trying to avoid a bail-out

but Portugal faced borrowing

costs it couldn't sustain. But a sad day for Portugal. It is

because we thought that we could manage for everything was settled for

this. The big question being asked here is not so much what the size of the bail-out fund will be, but what conditions might be attached. What further spending cuts and spending cuts and austerity may

be demanded, and, remember,

this is a country still in

recession. The UK will be exposed to the Portuguese

bail-out because it backs a

European emergency fund to help

countries in difficulty. The

aid will be in the form of loan

guarantees. The UK won't

actually hand over any money Portugal may need to borrow up

to 70 billion pounds. The UK contribution is likely to be

loan guarantees of up to ?4 billion. This follows a

loan of ?3.5 billion to Ireland

and other guarantees to and other guarantees to

Greece. Some in Portugal say

austerity measures are only

making matters worse. But the Chancellor of the Exchequer

today suggested the it should

be a warning to Britain. First Greece, then Ireland, today Portugal. that did not convince the world that

that they could pay their

debts. Two of the countries

with smaller budget deficits

than Britain. Now, all of them

being bailed out at huge costs to their populations. In Portugal, there is another

problem - there is only a care taker government here.

Elections are weeks away. So

who will negotiate the terms of a bail-out so important to this country and its independence? Now to

points. markets, the Dow closed down 17

Sport headlines now, and

US Mast thers morning? It Paul Kennedy

started that great tournament

and good morning looking at that dollar figure there makes

you wish you were at Masters. And Masters. And watching Rory

McIlroy, 7-under at the moment. And

moment. And he's finished his

first round. The 21-year-old

from Northern Ireland had a

great round. He's being chased

at the moment. The first round

continues. Let that's Phil

Mickelson. He is is playing with Geoff Ogilvy, the

is at 2-under and has finished half his first round and

Mickelson is one under. Tiger Woods has played quite Woods has played quite well

this morning. He's finished his

round at one under. The really

big surprise is Martin kiemer

who was named the world number

one not long ago, shot six over

par. A terrible first round for

him. That's Jack Nicklaus, who

has had the off and wanted more length on

the drive there. He was teeing

off to open up the Masters

there at Augusta. Another Australian who has done quite well this morning finished at

even par, so not brilliant but Adam Scott is coming back to

the fold and his game is being

rebuilt with that long putter.

This is what he had to say

about his round of even par. My

game is in good shape. I was

just a little off timing wise today, but that sometimes

happens when the nerves and

adrenaline is going teeing off

at the Masters. So it took me a

some good golf. But a little disappointing to finish that

way. The putter felt good

today. I to get into my rhythm tomorrow right from the get go

and get off to a good start.

It's something I've never

really managed to do here on

the first six holes. If I can

get off to a good start I might

be able to set myself up for a

swimming. The Australian good number. Let's go to the

championships

championships from last night.

Again there were a couple of interesting results. Geoff

Huegill, the comeback star he won his

the 100m fly. His time fell out

just outside the time that was Desinate designated as the cut-off. So we will wait to see

if there's some leniency for

him. And Belinda Hocking is now

in the 1,500 and 100 and 200 in

the record time. The all-time

important is 2:07.41. This is a

brilliant swim and Belinda goes back to back to back and makes

it an Australian record! She it an

smashed the time. 2:06.88 for Belinda Hocking. I am Belinda Hocking. I am so

first Australian excited about. That it's my

really excite and I think first Australian record. I was

tonight I was actually the most

relaxed I have ever been. I

think it really helped at the

start of the week. I did a good

100 and I made the team . So

the pressure to make the team

was off. 20m left to swim.

Geoff Huegill starts to take

the rest of the competition. control. He starts to shake off

outside. Huegill has to guts it Ashley coming

out here. He ups the ante, hits

is 52.36. the wall in first and the time

selection time. It would have is 52.36. It's outside that

been good to sneak under the 52

seconds but overall we did what

we had to do to make sure we secured our position and the depth of the other guys that raced tonight was raced tonight was awesome. Now we've made the focus to go on

to London, it's one of those

things now where the whole

focus is definitely on that

100. To some away with a swim

opportunity to race at like this to have another like this to

worlds is something I'm opportunity to race at the

grateful for. Briefly before I

wind up, the basketball last

night, the first play-off game

between New Zealand Breakers an

the Perth Wildcats there was a stunning result. There Perth

won the title last year but was

behind the New Zealand Breakers

after regular season in

win-loss, won this one win-loss, won this one 101-78.

Kevin leash top scored with 29

points and that was

game. The Perth Wildcats could

wrap up a surprise victory on

Sunday. I will keep you up to

date with the US Masters scores. One of those sports scores. One of

tournaments that you see every year and wish you were there, along with Tour de France and a

couple of others. It looks nice

and we will keep you up to date

with the players still on the

course. Now if you are not near

a TV, ABC News Breakfast can be

watched live on the web. Just visit the main ABC News

website. You will find a link

live every day. Vanessa to News 24 and that is

O'Hanlon joins us now with the weather. Vanessa? As we head into the into the weekend, cloud continues

continues to move along with a

cold front as it southern WA. Northerly winds

are strengthening in SA and

warm er temperatures again for the south-east but they won't

last. A low associated with a

front will continue to move

over WA then through the bight.

It will approach the south-east

late tomorrow bringing the warm late tomorrow bringing

days to an end. Showers and a

gust y westerly change will

Tasmania. On Sunday, the low spread through

and front will continue to

spread golder winds and showers

over the south-east and a

second low and trough will push

through the western half of WA.

So there's more showers on the outlook for the west. Around

the States for this Friday in

Queensland you have heavy

showers and storms about the

northern tropics. More showers and fresh south-easterly winds

along the east coast. In NSW,

apart from early fog in, a fine

day but it is a chilly morning

- minus 2 at Per Morning fog in Gippsland, they

will preshen in the west and central dricts. Tasmania also morning fog mainly about the north

north and then we can expect fine and sunny day. Winds will

freshen later in the west. Very

warm in SA, northerly winds

will frenten and a late cool

change will enter the west.

Similar to yesterday. WA, apart from isolated showers along the

South Coast, and mainly about

the east you're looking at a

mostly fine day and 24 degrees in Perth. Showers and storms in

northern WA and across the northern parts of the Northern

Territory but a dry and most ly

fine day in the south. Top of

31. Let's look at your weekend: You're watching ABC News Breakfast. Still to come - in

the United States Democrats and

Republican s are still deadlocked over the Federal

budget we will speak soon to Craig McMurtrie who was outside

the White House, the scene the White House, the scene of ever rising tension between

Barack Obama and the Republican

majority in Congress. Also

ahead we will review some of

furp s this morning we're

joined by Alan Howe of the

hertion. To the other news

morning Japan has been hit by a powerful aftershock. The 7.1 aftershock prompted a tsunami

alert that was latest cancelled. The aftershock

struck in the same area as last

month's devastating earthquake. Authorities say there was no

further damage to the Fukushima

nuclear plant. A gunmen has killed at least 10 children in

a school at Brazil. The shooter

walked into a class room and

opened fire. About a dozen

others were wounded in the

shooting spree. The man who is

believed to be a former student then took his own life. Patricks Stevedores is planning

planning to launch legal action

today in an 11th hour bid to

stop strike action at its

ports. It's locked in a battle

with the Maritime Union over a pay dispute. The union is

threatening rolling strike action from tomorrow. There's

been an angry backlash against Stephen Smith from within the

defence community over his

reaction to a sex scandal at

the Defence Force Academy. Some senior officers and the

Australian Defence Association

are accusing the Minister of unfairly maligning the military. Mr Smith says the

academy poorly managed a cadet who was secretly filmed having

sex with a colleague. Libya's

rebel fighters say NATO air strikes have mistakenly

attacked one of their convoys

near the oil town of breg ya.

They say several people were

killed or >>ird the attack.

It's the third such incident in

recent days. NATO officials say they will investigate the

claims but have no further

information. A war of words has Minister and the Defence Force

over the treatment of that

18-year-old female cadet who

was filmed while having sex

with a colleague. The Minister

has described aspects of the defence response defence response as insensitive

and stupid. He's also refusing

to support the head of the Australian defences force

Academy but critics are saying

Mr Smith has gone way Mr Smith has gone way too

far. Defence has found itself

in another fight, but this one

is on the home front. It's

dealing with the fallout after

a private sexual encounter at

the Defence Force broadcast to other cadets. I find the circumstances

absolutely abhorrent. But I am

not going to say any more than

that because I don't want to AFP investigation. But that

investigation is only going ahead after the 18-year-old female officer cadet involved went public. On defence advice, the initial AFP investigation wilted. Defence

didn't really fully comprehend

know to be the case. AFP the magnitude of what we now

involved. The AFP is examining investigators are

the issue of consent and the

use of the Internet. It depends

on whether it's transmitted across telecommunications device for instance, what circumstances are around that,

and as I said until we speak to

all the people concerned I am

not prepared to say whether

there is or is not an offence

being committed under ACT legislation. The young woman

punished yesterday in a who made the complaint was

disciplinary hearing on a

separate misconduct matter. A

decision that infuriated the

five days restricted, which Minister. She was sentenced to

means five days where essentially she had to remain

on the academy and docked one

defence day's pay. After calling

defence either insensitive or

stupid, the Defence Minister

continued the attack. Because

of the way in which this matter has

has been handled, we now have

very significant public issues

so far as defence's handling

and conduct of this matter.

That is entirely coloured by a

very, very serious error of

judgment in parallel tracking

this issue with other disciplinary

publicly and privately. The made that point very clear

defence association's kneel

James says he's spoken to

Defence Chiefs and says the

interfering. Ministers just Minister is

shouldn't do this. They don't do it in civil police matters. They shouldn't do it in military matters. The senior Coalition senator Nick Minchin

has defended the head of the

Defence Force Academy. The

Minister himself knows he's

overreact and I am sure he regrets

of course is not just one

incident for the Defence Force.

It's the late nest a long list of scandals involved drunkenness, drugs, bullying and suicides. The cutture at

the Defence Force is said to be

changing. But the former

Defence Minister, Pieter Reith,

says that is - Peter Reith says

that is happening too slowly. Aim not saying it's

easy, but I think we just

waited far too long for the ADF

to catch up with basically

community standards. He's bash Stephen Smith. I am delighted

to hear that he was furious. Someone should be furious. While the battlelines

widen, the female officer cadet

who made the complaint is now said to be on compationate

leave. And there was Peter

Reith as well who was on '7:30'

last night very feisty, as you

can be when you're a

Defence Minister. A blast from can be when you're a former

the past and wasn't he

blasting. I guess he came back

to that culture which he was saying existed from the early

'90s and still we're having 2 same

his responses - Smith is correct in

his stance without trying to

draw too long a bow Bou, the

abuse of the lady in question

is not dissimilar to pack rape.

How the defence cowl go ahead

with an a discipline charge is unthinkable. And 'It's time the

defence community realised they

are not above accountability to

their Minister. People like

Neil James seem to think they

have something special in their Smith. So Lee obviously support

ing what the Minister sup to.

Also interesting in Federal

politics is Timment appointment of George Wright as the national secretary of the ALP. of George Wright as the new

You may recall his appearances on News Breakfast last on News Breakfast last year

where he was defending the

NAB's ATM shutdown. At the

moment he is the head of moment he is the head of public

affairs at the NAB. If he gets

the nod today he will give up

similarity because that position. There's

lot of time trying to fix a

broken ATM system, now he will

be fixing a broken party. Perhaps

party. Perhaps it will be

easier than angry bank customers! Those factions can easier than angry bank

be pretty angry. But George

Wright has a bit of experience to help him in his new task. Now Queensland's Anna

Bligh Government has move fod defuse one of the defuse one of the biggest issues droving Campbell

Newman's push to be Premier -

the high cost of water. The Premier

Premier has announced she will

commercial water entities and

give responsible of retailing

back to the councils. The

Premier says her Government's

been working on the high price

of water for six weeks and had come to a dramatic conclusion. Today I can tell

the House that the blame game

on water in South-East Queensland ends. Council s will

be allowed to opt out of

commercial water entities and

take back direct control of

retailing and price s will be capped

capped with the CPI, current ly

around 2.7%. They say they're

going to keep a 2.7% cap on water. We would because they've been charging

us a 220% increase on bulk

water for the last four years. The councils have always blamed the high cost of bulk

water set by the State

Government for the high cost to

rate payers. It's like she said

I will give the pub back to I will give the pub back to the

publican, but I am going to

tell the publican what he can

charge for a middy of beer and

keep cranking up the price of beer. The State Government says

Campbell Newman drew up the

scheme he now opposes but he denies supporting

for the water utilities was opposed firmly and clearly by

mayors from 2006, 2007. The

Premier says she had to step in to stop to stop the councils making

millions rorting water. Rate

payers need a break and that's what we're going to give

them. The council says the

problem is the State Government's Government's insistance on paying off the water grid too

quickly. Everyone else does it over

over 40 or 50 years or the life of the infrastructure, this Government does it over 20 and

expected the people of

South-East Queensland to pay

that's caught up a the all the

local government on the hop. We

had nothing to do with the

discussion. There has been discussion. There has been no consultation. It hasn't ended

the blame game. This does

nothing to reduce the price of water. Just further muddied the

waters. Now they're in their

dwie light years but some

members of the ageing population reckon they have

never had it tougher. Work

longer, retire later and help

with the grand kids. Taking on

volunteer work is a hallmark this generation. Sun, surf,

sand - and saving lives. Not

the easy life for this group of 60 and 70-year-olds. How old are you? He's 69. Only a kid. I

am finding that I'm ageing the

arms and legs are not as supple

as they should

get down on your knees and look

after people at times. Some have been in lifesaving patrols

since the 1950s. Others since the 1950s. Others only started this century. I did, I

was an old girl when I started.

Relatively for the youngies.

These teenagers I feel very

old. As a group they are high achievers.

achievers. The doctor a former

CEO and Australian Olympian and

a one-time world champion I'm with, they don't know that we're old. We still feel the

same way we did from the

beginning. We gravitate to the beach and the beach and the water and the wave s. And always will. Midget Farrelly is a strong believer

in the patrol. When you pull

someone out of the water and

it's ise y for you and life threatening for them not to be

pulled out, you get a sense of self-worth and self-value. It's not enough to must keep up their

qualifications. It's a serious Even when the wavings are

heavy there's a strong rip and

blue bottles are about, blue bottles are about, no-one

doubts their ability. The population is ageing, someone

has to be doing the job. If

they're out there helping the

younger guys I think it's good

thing. It doesn't matter

whether you're 60

they can do the job as good as

anyone else. Patrol captain Sue

Carney a grease and agrees it's

a mix of old and young. I think they will be doing they will be doing it until

they get scattered out there at

Whale Beach. A few ashes are

out there? Yes, quite a few ashes do get scattered out there and I am sure a number of

my patrol will be going out there! Just not any time

soon. No, that's right. Each

year the Grey Whales have a

This year they've voted to

continue on. That's what I

want to do too when I'm olding

older. Barack Obama is holding more talks in a more talks in a bid to reach a

deal to avoid a governmentshot

down. For more, our North America correspondent Craig McMurtrie joins us now from

Washington from outside the White House. The sceeb of all

the action. Gooncht where are

we at, at the moment? Good morning. Still utter deadlock, it's been quite an

extraordinary 18 hours or. So Republican leaders came here to

the White House, they sat down

went for over an hour. with Barack Obama. Their talks

went for over an hour. Late about 11 o'clock the President last night Washington time

came out, he had a briefing. He

said that they had made

progress. The feeling on both

sides at that time was they

were closing on a deal and at

that time the folk yition was

on the size of the budget cuts.

But this morning the sides seem

further apart than anything.

The Republicans are saying they weren't close on policy riders that they've and they are also saying the

attach ed to this budget cut

bill are important. The riders are about cutting funding are about cutting abortion funding and restricting environmental re-regulations.

The Democrats say that that is

all about ideology and politics

and is not about cutting the

deficit and they're very angry

about that. Tnks Speaker, John

Baina, held a press conference

a little while ago. He told

them that there is quite a

distance between the two sides.

It is about numbers but it's

is Plame blaming the other about the policy riders. Each

saying they don't want to come

to a deal at all. Each are

blaming the other for this

government shutdown but the US instructions to hundreds of thousands of Federal workers

warning them to prepare for a

shutdown. They're coming back

here in a couple of hours but it's not clear whether they

will be able to bridge this

gap, whether Barack Obama will

be able to force a deal it's

getting increasingly serious. I

read John Baina is even

invoking American troops not

getting paid. He's moved a

toempry

has been dragged into the happens. So that emotive issue

debate as well? Absolutely. And

we saw Republican congressmen

lining up all of whom have a service records to talk about

Barack Obama has signaled very the stop-gap measure. But

clearly that

clearly that he will veto that.

Senate Democrats don't support it. The President's position is

this is another of another

stop-gap measures, it's time to

fund the US government for the

remainder of this fiscal year plus the very concerned that stop-gap measure there is

apparently a rider limit ing

abortion funding in the

district of Columbia here in Washington, which Democrats

just won't accept. What this

has really turned into - give you some perspective on

this, we're only talking about

a fraction of the Federal

Government budget here in the

United States, what this has really turned

really turned into now is a

the Senate, the Democrat symbolic power struggle between

dominated Senate, the Republican-dominated House, the

tea party movement within the

Republican Party and of course

actually control the outcome on this. And

this. And finally, Craig, these

things it always comes down to

personal tine dynamics . Do personal tine dynamics .

you believe Barack Obama and John Baina are capable of sitting down and forging a

compromise? Of course we aren't

in the room but certainly John

Baina in particular and even the President last the President last night, they've been at pains to say they get on with each other,

that they like each other. But

their body language and those

words don't seem to tally with sides seem to be taking the

now. And right now I would say

that there is less optimism in

this town that a shutdown will

be avoided. We're running out of hours now. The Federal Government officially run s out

of money tomorrow and, as I

said before, Barack Obama has invited the leaders back in

just over two hours for another

round of negotiations. But

right now there's no reason to believe that those negotiations are going to go anywhere, given

that the hard positions that

the sides are taking right

now. Tense times indeed. McMurtrie nurt in thank you very much. OK. Now

let's take a look at the national papers. Today national papers. Today we're joined by the executive editor

of the 'Herald Sun'. Great to see you. Stephen Smith and his see

battle now with the Defence

Chiefs and the particularly the

Defence Association is making headlines today. It's

interesting. There's several

strands to it. There's friction between Stephen Smith and

Defence Forces. And that's

interesting because he was

oddly aggressive yesterday and

he is not an aggressive man.

the election said he would be This is a man when Mugabe stole

having a quofrtion the UN.

Nonetheless he's come out

against hitting two days in a row

against the US forces - against

the forces. The allegation is this young this young girl had sex with

another personnel and this was

broadcast on Skype to another

room. If that is true that is a

serious criminal offence.

Notwithstanding the fact that they're trying to

they're trying to find out whether it is or not true. The

response from the Defence Force

has been a bit mixed. I think there's a very serious story here underneath it all and it's here

about the relation slp between

the Defence Forces an the Government and Houston. . The 'Canberra Government and Angus pretty well analysed what is

going on there breakthrough the

'Sydney Morning Herald' has it

on page one but they have a

different tack to it. They've

got - this is bad news for the

ADF because David Gallop of the

rugby league says the ADF can

learn from them. They had to turn turn to the rape crisis centre in Sydney to help in Sydney to help formulate policies on how their

footballers should bewhaif women. Obviously not things

that they learn at home in Sydney! It also brings - you

start to wonder who are our

Defence Force personnel? You

remember that sprinkler girl as

we called her? This is the girl

on the plane, the fight from

Port Moresby with Kevin Rudd

and they served him up the

wrong tucker. If they can't get

the Prime Minister's food

right, what can they do. He

lost his temper and swore and

called her a girl and she was

26. If the veet congress had

known if you swore at an

Australian soldier we would be

home in therapy. You're being a bit rough! You know

that. Pressing a few buttons

here. Speak of defence there's an interesting piece in the

'Herald Sun' this morning by

former Victorian Premier Jeff

Kennett. She arguing that the

focus shouldn't be coming Anzac Day that perhaps our

focus should be more on kokd

ya. It's not a bad argument're outnumbered, poorly train and we repelled inviedsers that we repelled inviedsers that - invade who made their way to

Australia and they attacked

Australia and bombed us. In

Gallipoli we were fighting

under another flag and we weren't really a nation even

though we called once since

191901. I think that is not a

bad case. Is he on the committee deciding what

committee that's been drawn

up. I don't think h is. He's

kept busy with Beyond

Blue. There was more clear and present danger by Japanese. And

the good news is we won. The

'Age' today, this is a real

celebration of all that is

Victorian. There's a lesson

here for Australia's sports.

Tonight Carlton is playing Collingwood. There will be

90,000 people there and I'm a

Pie. Sad fact of life. If

Collingwoods looks at the -

lose s at the weekend we're off

to 50 & good weekend. When we

last flew up the flag in 1991 after with winning the

premiership we did so playing

against the team called Fitzroy

at a ground called Victoria Park, which don't Park, which don't exist

anymore. It's an amazing revolution revolution that we've

had. Collingwood is very much

the team to beat. Isn't it a

provocative thing to unfurl the premiership flag before a match just one single match? This

is It used to be unfurled on

the round when you played the

team you beat in the Grand Final. Yes, but they didn't

beat Carlton We beat them

twice last year. But not in the

Grand Final. So why are you provoking that? Other teams beat them before they got

there. So hope the win. Do we have the time for

the dumbest? We. Do This is the

daftest story I've seen this

'Sydney Morning Herald' and you year. It's running in the

can see it on their site still. There's There's breaking news - there's

a house in Wales in South Wales

that looks like Adolf Hitler.

Adolf Hitler is on the left and

the house is on the right. That

looks like every terrace house in Britain. My house looks like Nelson Mandela. Are the people

moving out now the story was someone knocked on the door

that and told them that their

house looked like Adolf Hitler and they said it was news to them. Have a great weekend. We will. OK, now here is Vanessa

O'Hanlon with a look at the

weather. On the satellite image and cloud continues to move with a cold front, through southern WA. We have northerly winds that are

strengthening in SA and warmer temp furious the south-east but

they won't last. A low associated with the front will

continue to move through WA

there the bight. Showers and a

gusty westerly change will

spread through Victoria, SA and

Tasmania. Around the States,

heavy showers and storms across

the tropics. Showers along the

east coast. In NSW, a few

northern parts of the showers about the central and

and a fine day in the adjacent. Morning fog in Gippsland, warm and sunny day. For Morning fog in Gippsland, a

Tasmania, morning fog mainly in

the north then fine and sunny conditions. Northerly winds

will freshen later in the west.

Very warm in SA as well,

northerly winds will strentsden

and a cool change will enter

from the west. In WA, apart

from isolated showers along the

South Coast and mainly about

the east, it will be a mostly

fine day. We will see more

WA showers an storms in northern

Territory. For the weekend, we

can expect a shower or two in

Perth. Adelaide, sunny conditions in

Next hour I will take a

look at what's been happening

with some really big rainfalls.

We have a lot of rodents

running through the country at the moment. Watch out

sclaj. Other than Michael! I

wasn't very happy with that

discussion about Carlton and

and they're probably going to are Collingwood. I know the Pies

win back-to-back. Collingwood

fans are not to be encouraged: He's in sufferable. We got lots coming

up in the next hour. We ran a story earlier about story earlier about the row over the potential future of

the poebt 'Mercury', very much

an institution, the local paper

in that town. We will speak to

a reporter in our Hobart News room about what 'The Mercury'

means for Tasmania and the

state of that battle. We will

talk to Brendan Crabb, the CEO of the Burnett Institute for

medical research. Lots of cuts

coming ing up on the research side of things. Stay with us. A powerful aftershock rocks Japan, with another tsunami warning.

TRANSLATION: We believe there

is a high risk of houses is a high risk of

collapsing and mud and land

slides. A gunman kills at least

10 children at a school in Brazil. Patricks Stevedores

to launch legal action to stop

dock workers going on strike. And Northern Ireland's

Rory McIlroy cards a 7-under to lead the US Masters. Good morning, it's Friday, 8

April, I'm Michael Rowland And

I'm Beverley O'Connor. The top

story - in a chilling reminder of last month, of last month, Japan has again

been rock bade powerful earth

quake. The 7.1 aftershock

sparked another tsunami warning

that was late er cancelled. The

quake struck in the same area

as the one that devastated

large parts of the country. Buildings shook as far

away as Tokyo as workers fled

plant. the Fukushima nuclear power

no more damage was done. A. TRANSLATION: At the Fukushima

power plant we have looked many issues with our facilities power plant we have looked into

an personnel and verified that

everything is alright. So let

me again and repeat and update

on the took fk nuclear power

plant's current status. As for reported injuries there were

two workers near reactors one

and two and there were also seven

seven work ers near tin take.

They have not been injured and

they have all taken shelter in our seismic resistant building. ABC correspondent Hayden Cooper joins

Tokyo. What do we know about

the damage caused by this

quake? Remarkably, Michael, there doesn't seem to be any

major damage but it

very big earthquake, a very big aftershock. There are some

reports of minor injuries but thankfully nothing too serious. It was felt pretly strongly

strongly here in Tokyo which is

300km from the epi centre. Here

people started to get warnings

on their phones, that 10 seconds later the buildings an earthquake coming and about

started to shake and it went on

for quite a while, almost a

when you consider it. So it was minutes, which is a long time

very big earthquake, the

biggest since the actual main event which is four weeks ago

today. It made a lot of people

here Tokyo very nervous and one

can only imagine how they're

feeling in the earthquake and

tsunami zone. And also at the

Fukushima nuclear plant where we're hearing this morning that this latest quake didn't authorities are insisting that

inflict any more damage there. No, they sound confident that things are OK there. No, they sound pretty

there. Having said that,

though, they did have to evacuate the workers when the

earthquake hit, as you've just

seen. But they've now been seen. But they've now been let

back into the site to carry on the operations there. Now,

there are actually a couple of

other nuclear plantings which had troubles last night as a result of this earthquake. The

power was cut to two different plants. But, again, authorities say that it hasn't

led to any major problems

there. So the cooling systems they've managed to keep

operating, which is a good sign. But the power blackouts

extended to a number of towns

and cities ray cross the

northern half of Honshu. It

w